January 10, 2014
I feel that Maurice wants us all to celebrate his life, and I know he’d like us to smile when we think of him. So, I’ve posted a great photo with that impish grin that makes me feel a joke is about to come, and I’ve picked a story that was typical Mo. Jack and Emily know just what kind of guy our dear Maurice really could be, and they have the memory to prove it.
My Bee Gee story happened as a fluke. I was a grad student backpacking through Europe with my girlfriend Emily, and we met Maurice when the Bee Gees were in Berlin to perform in ’91. We didn’t have tickets to the show, and we were bummed, but we went to the amphitheater several hours before the concert and waited. My girlfriend was determined to stay and try to get a look at the guys, and so hours went by and we hung out (got discouraged after 4 hours). Then all of a sudden up came a car and Maurice Gibb got out. There were a few guys with him who must have been security and members of the band. Emily almost had a heart attack when she saw him because she loved him like crazy. She waved and screamed, and he waved back and yelled hello. We didn’t get to talk with him because he was hustled right back stage. One of the crew told us he was there for sound check. So we waited again because Emily was stuck in concrete and had no intention of budging an inch. She wanted to see him when he came out. Waiting paid off because when Maurice finished inside, he walked out and came straight over to us, posed for pictures and chatted up Emily like she was an old friend. He acted like we were the only thing on his agenda, and he was funny, smart……so nice. I felt like he just wanted to be one of us. We complimented him about his music and told him how much we liked the new album. He blushed like a kid and smiled as though no one had ever given him a compliment before. Afterwards, Emily and I felt like we had just been hanging out with someone we’d known forever. I have been to many concerts in my day since and have gone to book signings and lectures and waited in lines for autographs, sometimes from political figures, authors, actors. Anything that Emily wanted I would do. No one, and I mean not a single one of the people we have met, has come close to the kindness and generosity shown to us that day by Maurice Gibb. It’s a great memory we both treasure. Did you ever hear those words from the Bible, “those who are humble will be exalted and those who exalt themselves will be humbled”? This was Maurice. He was humble when he was at the top of his game. That is what true class is all about.